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Confederate States Congress

Monday, January 19, 1863.
Senate--The Senate met at 12 o'clock M.--Hon. R. M. T. Hunter in the Chair.

Prayer by the Rev. Dr. Dogget, of the M dist Church.

Mr. Hill, of Ga., submitted the credentials of the Hen. Hershel V. Johnson, elect from the State of Georgia to the sent of Hon. Robert Teembs, resigned. Mr. Johnson appeared and took the oath of office.

Mr. Mitchall, of Arkansas, submitted the credentials of Hon. R. W. Johnson, from the State of Arkansas and moved that they be filed, which was ordered.

Mr. Barnwell, of South Carolina from the committee appointed to organize the standing committees for the Senate, reported the following as the organization agreed upon by the committee, which was adopted:

Foreign Affairs.--Messrs. Orr, Yancey, Hunter, Wigfall, and Maxwell.

Finance.--Messrs. Barnwell, Hunter, Davis, Semmes, and Johnson, of Ga.

Commerce.--Messrs. Clay, Dortch, Oldham, Poyton, and Baker.

Affairs.--Messrs. Brown, Maxwell, Simms, Yancay, and Johnson, of Ga.

Judiciary.--Messrs. Hill, , Phelan, Semmes, and Caperton,

Indian Affairs.--Messrs. Johnson of Arkansas, Oldham, Clark, Simms and Phelan

Post-Offices and Post Reads.--Messrs. Oldham, Haynes, Mitchall, Baker, and Payton.

Public Lands.--Messrs. Clark, Baker, and Yancey.

Patents.--Messrs. Maxwell, Haynes, and Hill.

Claims.--Messrs. Davis, Burnsit and Payton.

Territories.--Messrs. Wigfall, Brown and Clark.

Accounts.--Messrs. Mitchall, Dortch, and Simms.

Printing.--Messrs. Phelan, Hill, and Haynes.

Enrollment and Engrossment.--Messrs. Dortch, Maxwell, and Caperton.

Mr. Hill, of Georgia, introduced a bill to organize the Supreme Court of the Confederate States. Ordered to be printed.

Mr. Simms, of Ky., offered the following:

Resolved, That the President be respectfully requested to communicate to the Senate whether the military authorities in the cities of Petersburg and Lynchburg, Virginia, have been authorized to seize and impress for public use, flour and other articles of value, the property of private citizens of this Confederacy, and whether or not, such seizures and impressments have been made by said military authorities in said cities,

Mr. Sparrow, moved to refer the resolution to the Committee on Military Affairs.

A short debate ensued on this motion--Mr. Wigfall saying that impressment was a necessity which there was no use in discussing, but that property should not be impressed without just compensation. If the resolution of Mr. Simms was directed to the inquiry whether or not property has been taken without just compensation, he could see no objection to its adoption.

Mr. Barnwell moved the words not incompatible with the public interested be inverted in the resolution, which was agreed to and the resolution was then adopted.

Mr. Simms submitted the following, which on his motion, was laid upon the table for the present:

Resolved, That the fight of protection to fire, liberty, and property, is the right inviolable of every citizen of the Confederate States, and that this right it made sacred by the highest guarantees of the Constitution, and that neither Congress nor the Executive, nor any officer or agent, of any of the departments of this Government have power to any and under any pretence with to ever to interfere with or destroy this instant an invisible right.

Resolved, That the right to hold and persons is a fight guaranteed to every of the Confederate States by the Constitution there of and the light to defend the same and his from invasion, or conversion, shall not be impaired or questioned; and that all seizures or impressments of any such property by any officer or agent of this Government are in violation of the plainest provisions of the Constitution, are destructive of the most sacred rights of the citizen, and an unwa table breach of the faith of the Government to the citizens thereof, and therefore, void.

" reported a bill to authorize the appointment of two Assistants to the , with equal to those of the chief in the establishment. Passed.

’ The Senate went into secret session.

House of Representatives.--The House met at 12 o'clock. Prayer by Rev. Dr. Doggett.

The Chair laid before the House a communication from the President, transmitting the report of Col. with reference to atrocities of Gen. Milroy in Western Virginia, in response to a resolution of the House adopted last week. The and report were laid upon the table and ordered to be printed.

The resolution of Mr. Lyons, which was undecided on Saturday, was taken up, but not agreed to.

Mr. Staples, of Va., submitted a resolution to inquire into the expediency of exempting and tellers of banks from enrollment for service in the army of the Confederate States. Not agreed to.

Mr. Dargan, of Ala., introduced a resolution to prohibit quartermasters and others from speculating. Referred to the Committee on Quartermaster and Commissary Departments, and ordered to be printed.

Also, a bill for the relief of collectors and all receiving officers and agents of the Government.--Referred to the Committee of Ways and Means.

The Speaker laid before the House a letter from Hon. J. P. Johnson of Arkansas, announcing his purpose to desist from any further contest for the seat now occupied by Hon. A. H. Garland. The letter was ordered to be entered upon the journal, and the Committee on Elections discharged from further consideration of the case.

Mr. Clopton, of Ala., in introduced a resolution that the Committee on Quartermaster and Commissary Departments and Military Transportation be instructed to confer with the Secretary of War, and procure, if practicable, the establishment of such regulations as will secure to the people of the Confederate States the freest use of the railroad transportation of the country consistent with the military necessities of the Government, and to inquire what legislation, if any, is necessary to accomplish this object. Referred.

Mr. Clopton, of Ala., also offered joint resolutions relating to the conduct of the existing was and the late proclamation of the President of the United States. These resolutions contemplate the delivery of officers of the Federal army to the State Government for trial. They elicited some discussion, which was participated in by Messrs. Chilton, Lyons, Foote, and others.

During the remarks of Mr. Lyons, Mr. Perkins, of Louisiana stated that if the discussion was to continue be should move that the House resolve itself into secret session, with a view to have some facts laid before it which it would be injudicious to submit in public session. He then moved that the House go into secret session, upon which motion the ayes and noes were called, and resulted — ayes 24 noes 40.

Mr. Lyons then proceeded with his remarks, maintaining the ground that the Confederate Government, as the war making power, had no right to turn officers over to State Governments for trial in State Courts. He was in favor of executing these officers, even on the field, but let it he done by the Confederate Government.

At the concession of his remarks, the House on motion of Mr. Kenner of La., went into secret session, to consider a communication from the President.

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